Tuesday, November 23, 2004

Invitation - visit our special issue while you still can

Access the special issue of the Disability Studies Quarterly guest edited by Deb Metzel and Mike Dorn FREE until the end of the year.  http://www.dsq-sds.org/2004_summer_toc.html

After January 1, 2005, you will have to pay to subscribe through the Society for Disability Studies.


DSQ: Summer 2004 - Theme Issue: Disability and Geography II


Table of Contents:

 - Introduction, Deborah Metzel and Michael L. Dorn

 - Points of Entry: Disability and the Historical Geography of Immigration, Penny L. Richards

 - Childhood Disability and Ability: (Dis)ableist Geographies of Mainstream Primary Schools, Louise Holt

 - Income Assistance (the ODSP) and Disabled Women in Ontario, Canada: Limited Program Information, Restrictive Incomes and the Impacts Upon Socio-Spatial Life, Valorie A. Crooks

 - Wayfinding With Visuo-Spatial Impairment from Stroke and Traumatic Brain Injury, Cathy L. Antonakos, Bruno J. Giordani and James A. Ashton-Miller

 - Independent Living and Self-Determination of Women with Physical Disabilities in Bandung, Indonesia, Inge Komardjaja

 - Learning Support for Disabled Students Undertaking Fieldwork and Related Activities, Cathleen McAnneny

 - The Theatrical Landscape of Disability, Victoria Ann Lewis


An announcement to this effect was recently posted on the entrance page, http://www.dsq-sds.orgDisability Studies Quarterly (DSQ) will soon be a password-protected web site. This means that only Society for Disability Studies (SDS) members, all of whom have an automatic subscription to DSQ, will have access to the full text of the journal's articles after January 2005. If you would like to become a member of SDS to receive a subscription, visit the SDS membership page at:


Deb and I welcome your feedback.


Sincerely,  Mike


Michael Dorn

Institute on Disabilities

423 Ritter Annex

1301 Cecil B. Moore Ave.

Philadelphia, PA 19122




Bloglines - Conference on Mobility and Transport for Elderly and Disabled Persons (TRANSED), June 18-21, 2007

Bloglines user mdorn@temple.edu has sent this item to you.

Rolling Rains Report:
Precipitating Dialogue on Travel, Disability, and Universal Design

Conference on Mobility and Transport for Elderly and Disabled Persons (TRANSED), June 18-21, 2007

By rollingrains on News

Canada is proud to host the 11th International Conference on Mobility and Transport for Elderly and Disabled Persons (TRANSED), to be held June 18-21, 2007, at the Palais des Congrès in Montréal under the theme Benchmarking, Evaluation and Vision for the Future. The conference will review advances in research, evoke international break throughs and explore perspectives for technological innovations in order to respond to the mobility challenges of an aging population and of persons with disabilities, as part of an inclusive society.

The conferences are held triennially under the auspices of the U.S. Transportation Research Board, and are extremely important in the field of accessible transportation, attracting researchers, policy-makers and other specialists to share innovation and best practices.

The conference will offer an exhibition where participants will have an overview of the deployment of innovation in the field of accessible transportation. The conference will include plenary and parallel sessions that may take a variety of forms, including roundtables, panels and tutorials. The structure will be based on the number of contributed papers and symposia accepted.

Canada is delighted to host the 11th edition of TRANSED and welcomes you to attend!

Friday, November 19, 2004

Popular websites drop Ted Rall because of public response to his 'special needs' cartoon -
The coordinated protests against Ted Rall's recent cartoon, drawing an analogy between the conservative movement's impact in the current political science and the mainstreaming of students with developmental disabilities have resulted in at two national media outlets dropping his work from their offerings - WashingtonPost.com and NewYorkTimes.com. Discussion of the cartoon has mushroomed in the world of Internet discussion lists and blogs. See description of the cartoon from the discussion list DS-HUM (Disability Studies in the Humanities.

I am not sure I agree with the action to drop Ted Rall's feature because he as used this touchy public issue to draw an analogy about the contemporary political scene. The cartoon was always intended to be a satire of political discourse across the liberal - conservative divide. The depiction of the young student with developmental disabilities as inarticulate and 'loathsome' is true to the response of some students (but more typically the adults who are the liberals in Ted Rall's allegorical framework) who were previously segregated or unexposed to the perspectives of people with disabilities. If the cartoon were drawn by somebody who is a recognized member of the disability community, such as John Callahan, then the public response to unattractive representations of disability would have been completely different.

When you combine the censoring of Ted Rall's political cartoons on mainstream news websites with the noted preference of people with disabilities for George W. Bush in the recent election, the actions of the Washington Post and the New York Times to send a chilling message about what is an acceptable use of disability in contemporary political discourse: only positive, 'uplifting' depictions need apply. Rall's cartoons do stir emotions, but one wonders if the same collective angst might be better be channeled towards full funding of No Child Left Behind? Why not? - because Ted Rall does not find enough mainstream defenders. He is a radical leftist (or a radical who finds himself slightly left of center on the political spectrum) and a polemicist -- opposition to his perspectives will find broad support in the context of post-election recriminations and the rush toward the political center. Cross-disability cohesion on touchy topics like No Child Left Behind is much more difficult to construct.

Dave Astor, "WashingtonPost.com Drops Ted Rall's Cartoons," Editor & Publisher: America's Oldest Journal Covering the Newspaper Industry, November 18, 2004. http://makeashorterlink.com/?R380433D9

Ted Rall's Second Response to his Critics - Tuesday, November 16, 2004. This kind of public statement, posted to his blog, is certainly not what Ted Rall's critics were looking for. He's built his career, and can't easily change what he is - a proud, blue state cultural elitist.

from Ted Rall's blog, http://www.rall.com/rants.html

More on Last Week's Toon - A write-in campaign by advocates for the disabled (they took offense at last week's cartoon in which I compared the results of the presidential election--wherein a bunch of uninformed morons in the red states demonstrated their ability to get their way at the expense of people who actually pay attention to current events) continues One of the hazards of this profession is that it requires fearlessness mixed with perfection. Draw 200 cartoons a year that people enjoy and you'll get few if any thanks. Certainly no one conducts a write-in campaign of praise. Draw 1 that goes astray--intentionally or otherwise--and everybody calls for your head. No wonder so many cartoonists don't take risks in their approach or in their politics. People are negative; they only react negatively. When I wrote earlier that I intended to research the subject of mainstreaming in the public schools--now called "inclusion." I will. But I'm confused. If your goal was to educate me, to convince me that I was wrong to depict disabled children the way I did with a view towards (presumably) gaining an ally in the media...why try to censor me? If I had to draw that cartoon again, I'd take a different tack. I regret hurting people who I have nothing against. I do want to comfort the afflicted and afflict the comfortable,
and I think I failed in that with this cartoon. Not to mention that the cartoon failed--too many people got bogged down in the analogy and the main point got lost. No one bats 1.000. I sure don't.

Thursday, November 18, 2004

Those of us with interest in the effectiveness of the Americans with Disabilities Act in helping people with disabilities in their search for employment should check out Ragged Edge Magazine's analysis - ADA Accommodation Stories. Thanks to Lydia for bring this article to my attention. MD

Thursday, November 11, 2004

Temple University Disability Studies Program, Spring 2005 course
Disability & Social Policy
Disability Studies 430/Social Administration 480
Course Reference Numbers: 088759 / 089019

open to graduate students and advanced undergraduates
Mondays, 5:00 PM - 7:30 PM in Tuttleman 1B, Temple University
Instructor: Steve Eidelman
Executive Director of The Arc of the United States

50 million Americans have disabilities and significant chronic health conditions.This course will familiarize students with public policies concerning disability and health and their impact upon people with disabilities. In particular this course will:
  • Familiarize students with the range of policies related to disability and health, including for example, Americans with Disabilities Act, Individuals with Disabilities Education Act, Income Support Programs, Vocational Rehabilitation policies, and Health Insurance policies;
  • Examine the origins, goals, and target populations for these policies and the extent to which policies are consistent with each other;
  • Assess the effectiveness of policies and the impact they have on people's real lives, including people with disabilities, family members and professionals.
  • Consider future directions for disability policy and how to pursue social change through policy.

For more information on the Graduate Certificate in Disability Studies visit our website, http://www.temple.edu/education/curric_dept/ds.html

Mike Dorn, Ph.D.
Coordinator of Disability Studies
Dept. of Education Leadership
648 Ritter Annex
Temple University
Philadelphia, PA 19122
Tel. (215) 204-3373
Fax (215) 204-6336
voice/TTY (215) 204-1356

CFP: Society for Disability Studies (SDS) 18th Annual Conference, San Francisco, June 8-12, 2005. Also available on the official website of the Society for Disability Studies.


Breaking Silences: The Cultural Dialectics of Disability, Race, and Identity

Location: San Francisco State University, San Francisco, CA.

The San Francisco Bay area has long been a focal point of the disability rights revolution; the 504 sit-in and the development of the independent living movement are but two examples. While the disability studies community has begun to examine and celebrate that cultural history, we have neglected another crucial cultural component – the rich diversity of races and ethnic groups that make up the population of people with disabilities.

Disability shows us that identity is multiple and shifting; and so this conference seeks to begin to redress the historical ignoring of race – and people of color –in disability activism as well as scholarship.

The disability movements in North America owe an enormous debt to the African-American civil rights movement of the 1950s and 1960s. Despite this debt, the disability movements, including disability studies, have been dominated by white people. Why has this happened, and at what cost? These questions can produce even more complex answers when we consider race as a social construct that extends beyond the simplistic binary of white/black to also include those ethnic communities (e.g. Native Americans, Latino/Chicana, Asian, Arab, etc.) that have been marked as the racialized Other in a white dominant society. Critical examination of the contested terrain that haunts disability and racial cultural politics is the theme of this gathering of activists, artists, and academics. How inclusive is disability culture – really? Why are race and disability so often considered mutually exclusive categories? How can scholars and activists cross the lines of identity politics to forge productive new alliances?

SDS invites community activists and artists as well as scholars to submit proposals that engage questions of disability culture, race, and identity in a lively, critical, rigorous, and provocative manner. We invite proposals from scholars across the academy, including cultural studies, health sciences, policy studies, humanities, social sciences, and legal studies. We welcome all creative and rigorous scholarship in disability studies, including submissions based on the prompts below. We encourage work which makes physical, sensory, and intellectual access an integral part of the presentation.

· What are the different ways in which disability culture is defined, described, delimited, debated, and defended? Who gets to decide what the boundaries of disability culture are?

· In what ways is racial segregation apparent in the Disability Rights Movement, and why is disability the often-ignored discourse within racial politics? In what ways do territorial concerns over who represents disability and race play into the silence and separation?

· In theoretical contexts, what concepts are deployed by scholars in both disability studies and race studies that are distancing? For example, how do scholars in both areas critically engage normative notions of autonomy, rationality, and coherent subjectivities?

· What are the material consequences of experiencing multiple oppressions? How does the very idea of "access" become even more complex in an oppressively racialized and ableist society?

· Will placing race and disability in conversation with each other yield unique opportunities for deconstructing oppression in both academic and activist contexts?

· In what ways do issues of class, ethnicity, gender, and sexuality further complicate the possibilities of forging alliances across and within different groups who struggle against social, cultural, and economic marginalization?

Presentation Guidelines for Accessibility

Accessibility in presentations is central to the philosophy of SDS. Presenters are encouraged to explore ways to make physical, sensory, and intellectual access a fundamental part of their presentation. They should, at minimum, provide hard copy and large print hard copies (17 point font or larger), e-text versions of papers in advance of their delivery (for open captioning), and audio description of visual images and charts, as well as supplying summaries and handouts as necessary. Presentations should also be planned so that their delivery will accommodate captioning and ASL translation within time constraints. However, we especially encourage presenters to think about how implementing accommodations might be used to enhance and re-imagine traditional modes of conference presentation.

Guidelines for Submitting Proposals:

Proposals should include the following information:
1) Title of presentation, panel, poster, or performance;
2) Contact information: name, affiliation, mailing address, phone number, and e-mail for each presenter;
3) Format of your proposal:

___ Paper presentation (15-minute presentation)

___ Poster session (Posters will be exhibited at a special 90-minute session where authors will have an opportunity to meet and interact with conference participants)

___ Panel (90-minute block for presentation of 3-4 papers by presenters. Please note that panel proposals require BOTH an abstract that includes a 250-word description of the panel topic AND a 250-word abstract for each participant.)

___ Workshop (90-minute application of a specific program or exercise)

___ Presentation (literary reading, dance, video/film, etc.)

___ Other (we welcome inventive presentation possibilities)

4) Abstract (250 words) with the following: Title and author(s) or performer(s); explicit statement of the thesis, findings, or significance; description of content and structure; information on how this presentation will be made accessible; audiovisual requirements (please note we cannot guarantee LCD projection for presenters).

The deadline for proposals is December 15, 2004. We plan to notify participants of their acceptance by February 15, 2005. All abstracts will be fully reviewed and scheduled by the 2005 SDS Program Committee: Nirmala Erevelles & Jim Ferris, (co-chairs), Alicia Contreras, Ann Fox, Joy Hammel, Jesse Lorenz, and Alice Wong.

Due to many excellent proposals, SDS faces an increasing limitation on the number of presentation slots available at the conference. We ask that those whose papers are chosen, and who commit to attend the SDS conference, avoid last-minute cancellation of attendance if at all possible; this will almost certainly deny other presenters the chance to share their work.

Please submit proposals electronically (using MS Word) to both Susan Magasi, the SDS Executive Assistant, at smagas1@uic.edu, and Joy Hammel at hammel@uic.edu.

Questions about the conference program should be directed to Nirmala
Erevelles at nerevell@bamaed.ua.edu or Jim Ferris at jvferris@wisc.edu.

If electronic submission is not possible, please mail or fax proposals to
arrive by December 15 to:

Susan Magasi
Society for Disability Studies
Dept. of Disability and Human Development
University of Illinois-Chicago
1640 W. Roosevelt Rd. (M/C 626)
Chicago, IL 60608-6904

Fax: 312-996-7743

Sunday, November 07, 2004

The Fall 2004 issue of Disability Studies Quarterly features a fascinating discussion of the perils and promises of Disability Studies in the Health Professions.

As an inherently unstable and disruptive academic pursuit, Disability Studies sets high standards for its own inclusiveness. See the recent discussion, drawn from the Disability Studies in the Humanities listserv, over a proposed set of guidelines for Disability Studies Programs.
Disability, art and performance
To: pkuppers@bryant.edu

Hi Petra,
I don't think I will be bringing the students in my class to the Mutter Museum this semester. When we spoke it wasn't clear what the focus of our course would be for the semester. As it turned out, these questions of medical representation are not terribly central to the interests of my students this time.

You did miss a very interesting (and frustrating) event at the College of Physicians last week (Oct 29 - oddly timed to coincide with Halloween weekend). This was a program held at the College's Founders Hall in conjunction with the Annual Meeting of the American Society for Bioethics and Humanities. Entitled "Anomalies, Curiosities, and the Medical Museum," the program (sponsored by the CPP Section on Medicine and the Arts) the event was dedicated to the memory of Gretchen Worden, (1947-2004), the very popular director of the Mütter Museum Director.

The four papers discussed the history of representation of medical anomalies, in print, theater and museum display. Although one paper did attempt to convey some of the personality behind the 'freak's' public persona (in that case, of Joseph Merrick, the famed 'Elephant Man'), the rest of the presentations appeared to glory in the grotesque display and push the boundary of the acceptable (reminiscent of the horror film context) without imparting any sense of humanity or meaning to the objects on display. In fact, the lack of humanity of the specimens on display was a point returned to again and again. The presenters all seemed to be associated with Penn or Drexel University, except for James Edmondson, who came to town to present a memorial tribute to Gretchen Worden, the curator of the Mutter Museum who passed away in June. I think he would be an excellent interlocutor for your book. The other presenters had prepared papers, but seemed to presenting work for the first time in this area.

Steven J. Peitzman, MD, FACP Chair, Section on Medical History at the College of Physicians of Philadelphia, & Professor of Medicine, Drexel University College of Medicine
Dr. Peitzman looked at printed collections of medical anomalies, focusing particularly collection of Philadelphia physicians George Gould and Walter L. Pyle (Anomalies and Curiosities of Medicine, 1901).

David H. Flood, Ph.D. Professor, Health and Society Programs, Drexel University
Professor Flood's presentation was on Joseph Merrick in popular culture over the past century. His talk was pretty cursory - the organizers didn't allow him to project his slides!

Paul Root Wolpe, Ph.D. Senior Fellow, Center for Bioethics University of Pennsylvania
Dr. Wolpe's presentation focused on the messages that visitors derive from the displays in the Mutter Museum, beginning with his own students. He observed that in recent years his students have displayed more anger than surprise to experiencing the works on display. Included in his PowerPoint presentation were many of the art images that had been used in the Museum Calendars over the years.

James M. Edmondson, Ph.D. Chief Curator, Dittrick Medical History Center and Museum Case Western Reserve University
A close friend to Gretchen Worden's, Dr. Edmondson showed slides from their visits to European medical museums over the years. I think he would make a tremendous resource for your research.

From the content of their talks and my brief conversations with them afterwards, the presenters appeared entirely unaware of Disability Studies. At times the program was downright offensive, with some of the more graphic images being left projected onto the screen for entirely too long. What a difference from the event that you and I enjoyed down at the U.S. Army Medical Museum.

How is your semester going? Just this morning I'm returning to email after attending another conference that was held at the College of Physicians. Entitled 'Health and Medicine in the Era of Lewis and Clark,' the conference brought together a number of noted scholars of the early American republic. The conference gave me some paper ideas, and it featured a presentation by Daniel Blackie, examining "'Disability' in the Early Republic" through the window of U.S. Army Pension applications filed in 1820. I also was able to meet Ben Mutschler whose new book project is on experiences of Revolutionary War Veterans. I look forward to reading their writings on the emerging discourse of disability amongst Revolutionary War Veterans once their work is completed. I encouraged them to consider presenting their work at an upcoming meeting of the Society for Disability Studies, and reminded them of the publishing venues Disability Studies Quarterly and Disability and Society.

How are things at Bryant College? Looking forward to our further conversations.


Are oral histories subject to IRB approval?
New guidelines have been drawn up, in order to determine whether oral history projects are governed by federal guidelines requiring IRB approval. See discussion on the H-ORALHIST internet discussion list. The guidelines themselves are based upon negotiations between the Oral Historal Association, the Organization of American Historians, and the Federal Department of Health and Human Services. http://makeashorterlink.com/?K1F5229B9

Wednesday, November 03, 2004

FTSE 100 firms ignoring disabled web access
New study finds that only fourteen percent of European FTSE 100 companies have taken steps to ensure website accessibility for users with disabilities over the past three years. from Isolani - further coverage of Web Accessibility issues (with a British Spin)

Monday, November 01, 2004

Pennsylvania's Initiative on Assistive Technology (PIAT)
The Commonwealth's Assistive Technology Act Program
November 1, 2004

Dear Colleagues: Happy Assistive Technology Awareness Month ! ! !

Although we don't have the formal proclamation from Governor Rendell's office in our hands at this time, we are expecting it any moment and will get copies right out to you after we receive it! In any case, we hope you will use Assistive Technology Awareness Month as an opportunity to promote assistive technology as a tool to independence for Pennsylvanians with disabilities and Older Pennsylvanians.

Plan a static display of low tech devices; borrow one or more high tech devices from Pennsylvania's Assistive Technology Lending Library to demonstrate; hang an AT poster from Pennsylvania's Initiative on Assistive Technology in a prominent location; and/or stick a 'sunburst' with the AT Awareness Month message on your outgoing mail! Tell people you know about other Pennsylvania resources, such as the Pennsylvania Assistive Technology Foundation or the Telecommunications Device Distribution Program.

You can contact us (kstoehr@temple.edu, 215-204-5395) for AT posters ("Assistive technology can help you do the things you want to do") or to request stickers, or for more information about other Pennsylvania resources for obtaining assistive technology. If you get a moment, let us know how you celebrated! With best wishes for a busy Assistive Technology Awareness Month.

Amy S. Goldman, Project Director, PIAT
Associate Director, Institute on Disabilities